The *JAWS*(the first one from 1975, NOT the sequels) discussion board

Discussion in 'Archive: The Amphitheatre' started by waheennay, Oct 12, 2002.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. waheennay Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2000
    star 4
    Steven Spielberg's JAWS is one of my favorite movies. One of the things I love about it is that it's structure is divided into two distinct parts: the "Amity Island" part and the "Orca" part. The part where Chief Brody(Roy Scheider), Hooper(Richard Dreyfuss), and Quint(Robert Shaw) is where go out to sea on the ORCA and hunt the shark is where the movie really takes off for me. It's what makes it truly great.
  2. Darth_name Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2000
    star 4
    Yes, jaws has always been my favorite movies. I never knew the boat was called ocra, though.

    The only thing that ruined that movie for me was the sequels, jaws 2 was the only tolerable one.
  3. Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2000
    star 6
    Was there anything that signaled that Spielberg was capable of making this, before it was given to him?
  4. waheennay Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2000
    star 4
    The TV movie DUEL starring Dennis Weaver about an unseen semi truck driver menacing an innocent motorist out in the desert showed Spielberg's talent to direct suspense.
  5. Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2000
    star 6
    Silly me. I forgot about Duel. Spielberg even mentions Jaws as a semi-sequel to Duel.

    It's this film and SW that made people start returning to the movies back in the mid to late 70s.
  6. TK_Four_Two_One Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 17, 2002
    star 5
    And made people scared of the water! :p
  7. Darth Dark Helmet Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Dec 27, 1999
    star 6
    I think it is one of the better examples of how to do suspense in a movie. You rarely get a good look at the shark, only an idea of how big it is. That is effective as hell. It keeps a certain amount of mystery around the shark itself. And using the barrels to signify the presence of the shark is near genius.
  8. Goldenboy62 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2002
    star 2
    Actually everyone should do some reading on the making of Jaws. Spielberg had given up on the project. The editor, a woman whose name I cannot recall at the moment saved that film when Steven, at his wits end dumped it in her lap. She is the real reason that we remember Jaws to this day. Do not underestimate the power of a good editor.

    The suspense that Jaws has is there primarily by accident. If the mechanical shark that Spielberg had built had worked properly, we would have seen much more of it, and thus eliminated the suspense. Jaws has to go down as one of those projects where everything that went wrong coincedently turned out right.
  9. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    Quint: "Here lies the body of Mary Lee, died at the age of 103, for 15 years she kept her virginity. Not a bad record for this facility."

    That is the classic line from Jaws that I love.

    Quint is what makes this movie in my opinion. I love his character. "Here is to swimming with bolegged women"

    Hooper: "Dammit Martin. You pulled the wrong one. You screw around with these tanks and there going to blow up."
  10. MatRags Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2001
    star 4
    When I first saw this thread, I immediatly got the "Show me the way to go home" tune in my head.

    Jaws is a great film, by accident or not. I love the whole sequince when their on the boat. "You're gonna need a bigger boat" Classic line.

    Plus John Williams' music sets the suspense from the first scene of the movie on.
  11. Palpateen Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2000
    star 4
    Drayton, I agree, DUEL is terrific.
    I saw somewhere that Spielberg has a copy of DUEL and he takes it out and watches it about once a year to remind him what got his career going. To stay connected to his roots. Smart man. For a very low-budget TV movie, it's terrific. Just Dennis and that little red car, which in case you didn't notice, is a VALIANT, (brilliant choice, they don't make those any more but that's the PERFECT car, don't ya think?) and that big menacing truck. He did a LOT with a little. One of Spielberg's concerns about accepting JAWS was that he would be pigeon-holed as a director of large, insensitive killing machines. He didn't have to worry, did he?

    Incidentally, DUEL aired on American television for the first-time in October 1971 and was a sensation. It got him a lot of attention. And the studio LOVED him because they got their money back after the network they licensed it to, ran it twice so it was already in profit. So then they decided to run it in theatres - in Europe where it hadn't been shown on TV yet. (Spielberg had to shoot 15 more minutes to pad it out to feature length and he was only given TWO DAYS to do it!) It made six million dollars in Europe which was an unexpected bonus for Universal Studios and was a LOT of money in the early 70s. He was on his way.

    E ran a TRUE STORY, 2 hours long!, about the making of JAWS. If you've never seen it, it's a must see.
    Darth Dark Helmet mentioned the yellow barrels. One of the things that shocked me in the E show was that the barrels were born of necessity. The shark was taking forever of course to be readied and they had all this stuff to shoot and no way to indicate the shark was in the water. Well, production designer Joe Alves saved the day and came up with the barrels idea. It added to the suspense because it kept the shark hidden, but they were added for practical reasons. I always thought the barrels were written into the script that way, but they were added during production.

    The making of JAWS is one of the most amazing stories in the history of cinema. It's almost as entertaining as the movie itself. Based on what I've read, the pressure on Spielberg was IMMENSE. A lot of people commented that if he had been an older, more experienced director, he would have had a nervous breakdown. He had doubled the budget and shot over 150 days, the longest production schedule in the history of Universal Studios at that time. Shooting on the ocean and struggling with the mechanical shark was a nightmare. Spielberg mentioned in the E documentary that he had to solve all kinds of problems that he never even knew existed until he started shooting the movie, like dealing with tides and salt water eating the shark mechanism and things of that nature.

    He was scared to death he'd never finish, or worse, that he would finish and it would be a disaster.

    Not to worry. :)

  12. keokiswahine Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2000
    star 5
    I read the paperback on how Jaws was made a few months after I saw the movie. totally awesome. Like GL in his struggles to get ANH made, Spielberg had the same problems of sort, too. The specialty guys couldn't make Bruce the shark to work on que.
  13. Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2000
    star 6
    What's the name of this Making Of book? I'd love to read it. :)
  14. keokiswahine Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2000
    star 5
    I think it's out of print now; most probably called, The Making of the Movie JAWS, a paperback. Try your library or used paperback book store.

    I noticed there's a 25th anniversary paperback on JAWS. here's the link to it in Amazon.com. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1557044589/qid=1034522529/sr=2-3/ref=sr_2_3/002-2430737-9291262

    There's also a video on the Making of JAWS, too, I think. here it is, part of the 25th anniversary, it's a 2 tape collection. amazon link is, http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/search-handle-form/002-2430737-9291262
  15. Obi Wan Bergkamp Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 19, 1998
    star 3
    Well production designer Joe Alves saved the day and came up with the barrels idea.

    And I thought Peter Benchley came up with the idea in the book
  16. Moff_D Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 3, 2002
    star 5
    Being Spielberg's first big movie I think it often gets lost in the 'his best' debate, but it remains one of his best movies IMO. So much is suggested by what you don't see...excellent filmmaking. The score wasn't bad either. ;)
  17. waheennay Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2000
    star 4
    The "Indianapollis" monologue by Quint is one of the best movie scenes EVER. There's some question about who wrote it though. Some say it was John Milius who did uncredited screen doctoring and some say is was Robert Shaw himself. Either way the performance and the writing is incredible.
  18. Mastadge Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 1999
    star 7
    It was John Milius who wrote it.
  19. Oakessteve Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    May 9, 1999
    star 6
    Actually, I think it was mainly Robert Shaw. John Milius contribution to the script was extremely minute. I think was about one line, or something, but I've forgotten what one it is now.

    Anyway, Jaws is one of my favourite films. The three leads are just wonderful.
  20. Super_Nation_Jock Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jul 4, 2002
    star 4


    The name of the paperback about the making of JAWS is THE JAWS LOG by Carl Gottlieb.
    Gottlieb shared screenwriting credit on the movie. When the movie came out and was such a huge hit, Gottlieb was logically chosen to crank out a quickie paperback on it, since he'd been there throughout the shooting.

    The E documentary goes into some detail about the true author of the Indianapolis speech. It's a controversy that will probably never be resolved. My personal opinion is that it's part Gottlieb, part Milius and part Shaw. Shaw was a fine writer by the way, he wrote a successful play.
  21. keokiswahine Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2000
    star 5
    was there ever comment from Spielberg about the Indianapolis dialogue?
  22. Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2000
    star 6
    It's explained on the DVD. I'll check it later. :)
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.